March 13, 2008

Williams Probes for Glynn's Hidden Talents

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Following a thrilling 9-8 victory over No. 16 Army last Saturday, men’s lacrosse senior midfielder and co-captain John Glynn took a face-off with Sun senior writer Lance Williams. Williams is still wondering what hit him.

1. As you know I like to start out on a serious note, the lacrosse team reached the Final Four last year and generated a lot of buzz around campus. What did it feel like to score the game-winner over Albany in the NCAA quarterfinals with four seconds left in overtime?
It was definitely the greatest feeling of my life so far. When you’re a little kid, you watch the NCAA tournament on TV and look up to that level of lacrosse. Just to be able to help our team get to that next level, the Final Four playing in front of 54,000 people, it was just one of the best feelings.
So it was the best moment of your life?
I would say up to this point, yeah. But there’s more to come.
Did you drink heavily that night?
[Laughing] We actually had a long bus ride back home …
Of course, no drinking then?
No, no drinking.
I don’t believe you, but I’ll move on. By contrast explain what it felt like to lose the heartbreaker against Duke in the semifinals with three seconds left.
That was tough. Knowing that we were so close and crawling back into that game, it was a barnburner. It hurt, but the way we played and the way we dug in and battled back was definitely something to be proud of.
Second team All-American honors offer any solace for you?
I mean, it’s alright.
That sounds like you would have liked to win that game more.
Definitely, no matter what.

2. Moving to this year, the team is 2-1 and coming off of a 9-8 win over Army where you blew up for a goal, two assists, earned 14-of-19-faceoffs and eight ground balls; are you a better player now than you ever were before?
I would like to say so. Coach T[ambroni] gets the most out of us, and you can see from my freshman year on that I’ve just grown as a player and become a lot more mature. I just make better decisions on the field so I would like to say that I am.
A little tougher question, is the team better than last year?
Right now we’re trying to find ourselves. We lost a lot of seniors who logged in a lot of minutes for us last year, so we’re just trying to find our niche and identity as a team. I wouldn’t say that we’re better or worse than last year, we’ve got the pieces we’re just trying to put them together.
Sounds like a cop out.
[Laughing] You’re making it tough on me.
What about a prediction for the rest of the season?
We’re starting to roll, once we get things going I think we can win out.
Does that mean the team will go back to the Final Four?
Yeah, definitely.
Let’s take that one step farther, can you guys win a national championship?
Anything can happen at that point.
Do you believe? It’s your last year man.
I don’t know, we’ll see. It’s difficult to say.
OK, I won’t push you to say it.

3. I received a lot of information on your personal life, so let’s get to the good stuff. Would you describe yourself as a momma’s boy?
[Laughing] I knew that was coming. I guess you could say that, I think a lot of these guys are jealous, though. She takes care of me.
I would agree that they are jealous, but what does she do for you specifically?
I mean, she comes up all the time.
What does that mean? Does she make it to all your games?
She comes up to most of them. She’s done my laundry and cleaned my room a few times too.
That doesn’t really bother me, it seems like a typical mom thing to do.
Yeah, that’s not too bad.
Is there anything a step farther than that?
I don’t know have [my teammates] said anything?
Well, one thing that struck my interest was that, well first of all, where do you live?
Long Island.
And how long is the drive from Long Island to Ithaca?
Five hours.
She goes five hours, both ways, every time? Good woman.
Yeah.
Does she bring anyone with her usually?
[Laughing] She’s brought some visitors with her.
What kind of visitors are we talking about?
I would say lady visitors.
Lady friends. And I’ve heard that there is a different lady friend for every couple of games. Can you explain what the hell is going on with that?
I just have a lot of good friends at home that want to come up and see my games.
Is that right? They must be pretty good friends.
That’s all I’m going to say about that.
[Laughing] I can’t let you off the hook that easy, sorry man. Is your mom doing work for you?
[Laughing] She might get the assist on some of those.
There you go. All of them or just some?
No, not all of them. But she definitely helps.
I’m just trying to understand the situation from her shoes. Why does she put up with driving a random girl a total of 10 hours every week? That’s a big commitment.
I think she likes them, they’re good friends of mine. Actually, I don’t know what she thinks about them.
That’s dedication though.
Yeah, heart.
As much as I want to, I just can’t pursue this anymore, it’s too weird.
Let’s move on.
Do you talk to her at least once a day?
Probably once a day, she throws me a text every now and then.
So twice a day? That’s what I take from that answer.
Alright twice a day.

4. I also heard you speak a unique language, in the sense that you utilize a lot of grunting, mumbling, and combining of words incorrectly, is this true?
Yeah, I’m going to have to say that it’s true. It’s probably the simplest way to talk.
What do you mean it’s the simplest way to talk?
I don’t know. I just forget to say a lot of words in-between sentences.
You forget to say a lot of words in-between sentences? Wow, I’m not sure what that means.
I couldn’t tell you. Whatever comes to me as the simplest way to say something.
Your mom didn’t teach you better grammar?
She has I just …
Neglected it?
I guess so, you can say that.
How did this develop, where did it come about?
I never really noticed it until I started living with these fools up here. I guess it just rubbed off on me.
What’s your favorite word?
Umm, my favorite saying is, “Oh my God.”
OK, we’ll get to that in a second, because that sounded like someone familiar. But I was looking for, “uhhhh.”
[Laughing] You’ve probably heard it a couple of times already.
You’re right, I’m not going to record it but I have heard it a few times. I will say this, it’s versatile.
You can use it in a lot of different contexts.
And you claim that people understand your language?
Yeah, my roommates and teammates have no problem.
Do you think it hinders your communication on the field?
I think it helps. For instance “Uhhhh” means give me the ball.
That’s what she said.

5. Speaking of voices, do you think your voice resembles a certain cartoon character?
I’ve heard that, Cartman right?

Exactly, Eric Cartman from South Park, why might people think this?
I don’t know South Park is one of my favorite shows and he’s just one of the funniest characters you’ll ever see on TV.
I’ll give you that, is it just the voice that these guys rag on you for? I mean, you’re not a fat, midget cartoon, is there more to the story?
I hope not but there probably is.
Give me your best impression.
[Cartman voice] Oh my God.
There it is again, it’s good.
[Cartman voice] Screw you guys. I’ve also been using that one.
There it is. What about “Respect my authority!”
That’s a good one.
Anyone else that you think you might resemble, fictional or not?
I’m not too sure about that.
How about a cross between Cartman and Turtle from Entourage, your thoughts?
I can see that, Turtle just likes to relax, hang out, and have a good time. He’s just a laid back kind of guy.
But what about Cartman, isn’t he kind of a dick?
He’s a little bit of a dick.
Right, so would you call yourself a dick?
I don’t think so. But I do joke around a lot, especially with the guys on the team.
Does it bother you that everyone compares you to fat characters?
I was chunky when I was a kid but I’ve grown past that, so it doesn’t bother me anymore.
Have you ever used Cartman as a password on your computer. Does your love actually go that deep for this guy?
It was just the first thing that came to my head when I was making the password.
How did you spell it?
Yeah I spelled it wrong, C-A-R-T-M-E-N.
That’ll happen dude, no worries.

6. How do you spend your free time?
I like to relax, play some video games, chill, eat “Tasti D-lite.”
[Laughing] Eat Tasti D-lite? You just threw that in there on the same level as chilling and video games?
Yeah, I like it; I’m not going to lie. It’s good.
Would you say that eating ice cream at “Tasti” is a slightly feminine thing to put on that list?
I mean, I’ve got to watch the figure a little bit. I don’t want to be in the fat club.
[Laughing] I just wasn’t expecting that. But it is right across the street, I’ll give you that.
It’s close, it’s easy.
OK, I’ll concede that, but what exactly do you eat there? Because the girls I’ve talked to always go with the non-fat, low-calorie nonsense. If you say that then this interview might take a turn for the worse for you.
It depends on the mood I’m in; I usually go with a milkshake. I’m not too worried about it.
Do you think it makes you less of a man going there?
Definitely not. Everyone I live with goes there, so if I’m going down, they’re coming with me.
Gotcha. Let’s get back on topic, do you play the guitar?
Yeah, and I played the saxophone all through high school too.
Really?
Yeah, I was an All-Suffolk county saxophone player.
I didn’t know they made rankings and whatnot for members of the band. Do you still play the guitar?
I do.

I heard you can play any song you hear on the guitar within about 10 seconds of listening to it.
I try. Not 10 seconds, maybe a little bit longer.
That’s pretty impressive, multi-talented.
Yeah I have a pretty good ear for music. My mom, I know I’m back to her, is a freak with music so I guess I got it through my genes.
Are you an aspiring musician?
Not really, but I was in a band in high school called “Keep This Alive.”
[Senior] Drew Webb told me something interesting, which was that when you guys were freshman, you would play songs for him at his townhouse at 7 a.m. on Sundays. What is the deal with that?
That’s true. I would wake up early for those guys: Drew, [seniors] John Espey and Danny Nathan. Actually one time with Danny, he had a significant other with him in the room, and myself and Tee Cahill went up there with my guitar and just started screaming the name of the girl to the “Rocky” theme.
[Laughing]
She was pretty surprised, it was fun.
How did he take it?
He was hiding her, but she poked her head out and was smiling a little bit.
Giggling, if you will.
Giggling, yes.

7. I heard someone broke into your apartment a while ago, did they steal anything of value from you?
Yeah they took four of our fish.
Was one of those your favorite?
Yeah, he was a goldfish with a brain on his head?
What?
He had like a brain coming out of his head.
Like some crazy growth type thing? You’re saying he was seriously deformed?
Yeah, but he was special to us, his name was George. We lost him, Clark Kent, who was our Siamese Fighting Fish in vibrant red and blue, X-Ray man, who you could see all the bones in his body. We had some characters in there.
Who steals a fish, honestly?
I don’t know, they took a lot of computer gear and our fish.
Crazy, they weren’t valuable fish right?
No but we lost some serious characters.
It sounds like a personal vendetta against you guys. Do you think your little buddy is still alive?
I hope so.
But probably not.
Yeah, probably.

8. Back to lacrosse for a second, you are 32-47 in face-offs this ear after being under .500 last year, what’s the biggest difference in that part of your game?
I just put a lot more time into it this year. We had a bunch of guys who did it last year so when I stepped into a new role, I had to work on my moves a lot more.
Do you trash talk your opponent in the circle?
I try to get in his head a little bit.
By doing what? I mean you have some time in there before the ref puts the ball down.
Nothing too intense. I blow a little whistle of my own, tell him that he’s holding the ball, stuff like that. I just try to get him off his game.
Do you ever say something along the lines of, “I had a good time with your sister last night.”
[Laughing]
That would rattle him, and it’s well within the rules.
I don’t talk that trashy but I did get called a midget once.
That’s not good, what did you comeback with?
Something along the lines of “This midget just made you look as stupid as your
face.”
Interesting.
Yeah, this guy was deformed though.
I see, he was deformed in the face. Did you win the face-off as well as the verbal sparring?
Yes and we won the game.
Nice. I hear you’re also quite the student, what’s your secret?
Making sure you get to all your classes on time, studying …
Studying helps.
Yeah, it does, putting extra work in, just being on top of all of your classes.
How much of that is a result of your mother?
I do all my own work but she gave me that mental edge.
The desire.
The passion.

9. Two quick hitters for you, first one, are you coach Tambroni’s long-lost son?
[Laughing] That’s funny. No, I am not.
But you guys have a pretty close relationship?
Some people say.
What does that mean?
I’ve been through a lot with him, both on and off the field.
Is he a father figure for you?
He’s a good-looking guy, a good role model I guess.
The second quick question, are you a loud eater?
Yes, I am.
So loud that people can’t hear their conversations.
I wouldn’t say that.
I don’t want to mention any names, but someone dropped that bomb on you.
Well I’m working on that.
Good luck with that.
Thank you.

10. This is my last question, probably ever, and it is always the same. Who is the hottest women’s team at Cornell?
I was thinking about this and one thing that I really enjoy is spandex, so I’m going to go ahead and say women’s volleyball or the track team.
Great answer, but a co-MVP type thing doesn’t fly. Go with one for me.
I will go with the girl’s volleyball team, despite the fact that they’re taller than me. All of them.
That doesn’t bother you at all?
Absolutely not. I’m single and looking, so send them my way.
You hear that volleyball team? John is looking for some loving, and height is not a factor.

10 Questions with Lance Williams will never appear again. He will be handing off his duties to junior forward Shannan Scarselletta of the women’s basketball team, also a Sun columnist, after Spring Break. Lance would like to thank all of the loyal readers whose encouragement and sense of humor kept him asking many a question over the past year. For the last time, all complaints, threats and praise can be sent to lwilliams@cornellsun.com.